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Applying the Comprehensive Model to Workplace Mediation Research

Polkinghorn, Brian
June 4, 2015

Source: (2006) In, Harrman, Margaret S., editor, Handbook of Mediation: Bridging Theory, Research, and Practice. Blackwell Publishing pp.148-173

Chapter 2 of this book presents a comprehensive model of mediation based on a descriptive review spanning more than four decades of research on interpersonal conflict. The model clearly synthesizes mediation research, as well as different theoretical lenses and various contexts where mediation is practiced at the interpersonal level. In this chapter we will apply, compare, and examine how the comprehensive model provides a frame that examines workplace conflict and our research on the United States Equal Employment Opportunity Commission’s mediation program. Our primary focus will be on research results from the first two of three studies conducted by the research team at the Center for Conflict Resolution at Salisbury University on the EEOC mediation program. The first study examines participant perceptions of the EEOC mediation process. The second, companion study focuses on the mediators’ perspectives on the process, while a third study focuses on why employers decline an offer to mediate. It is worth noting that these three research projects were conducted long before the comprehensive model was developed, and yet there is a good deal of congruence. This chapter also demonstrates a variety of ways to examine the model and, as a result, add new information, constructs, and theoretical ideas. (excerpt)


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